Sunday, August 7, 2011

Mom's Favorite Macaroons (Or, "All Hail the Kitchen-Aid")

My mom's birthday happened to fall the weekend before I left DC for the wedding and honeymoon.  Knowing that I would see her soon after her birthday, I decided to make her favorite cookie -- almond macaroons -- as a birthday gift.

However, in the midst of laundry, packing for two weeks in two different climates, last minute wedding logistics, wrapping up projects at work, and cleaning, I realized that this was nothing short of being masochistically over-ambitious.

Which I'm prone to doing sometimes.  I'm just a little bit Type-A.

But hey, I decided, sleep is for the weak!  (False.)  I can sleep on the honeymoon!  (Also false.)  It's time to bake!  (True.)

Happily, just as I had decided to make the aforementioned macaroons, my fiance (now hubs!) went to get the mail, and with what did he return?  An effing Kitchen-Aid mixer.  The one we registered for.  The professional-grade, no-sh*t, gorgeous Kitchen-Aid.  My best friend's mom bought it for us.  I nearly had heart palpitations at the very sight of it.

Now, some background on my love of the Kitchen-Aid mixer: for approximately a decade now, that thing has been, for me, the holy grail of kitchen appliances.  I have coveted it, drooled over it, stood in department stores gazing dreamily at it.  Judaism has the Western Wall, but in my home the Kitchen Aid mixer is the holy of holies. 

I decided that the Kitchen Aid had to be unpacked and properly worshiped before it could be put to use in pursuit of macaroons.

I'm not worthy!
Prayers and supplication 

After getting it up and running, it was...bakin' time.  Since this was my first time making almond macaroons since my parents and I found out about our glutardation, I found this recipe on The Gluten-Free Guide and modified it a bit.  I used almond flour (Bob's Red Mill FTW!) instead of whole almonds, added vanilla extract to complement the almond extract, and sprinkled vanilla sugar on top before baking them.

Mom's Favorite Macaroons

3 Cups Bob's Red Mill Almond Flour
1 1/2 Cups granulated sugar
3 egg whites
1 1/4 teaspoons almond extract
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Vanilla sugar to taste (optional)

Mix all but the vanilla sugar until you form a thick paste (and believe me, it's definitely a paste -- if it's runny, add more almond flour).

The holy of holies, in action
Scoop out the paste onto a parchment-lined baking sheet.  Each cookie should contain about a tablespoon's worth of paste.  If you're using the vanilla sugar, now's the time to sprinkle it on.

Oh hay, Hans.

Bake at 325 degrees for 20-25 minutes until golden brown, then set them out on a rack to cool. 

And, if you're like me and happen to have the impulse control of a 3-year-old when faced with cookies, steal a few just to make sure they'll make an acceptable birthday present.

1 comment:

  1. Now I need to get married so I can also get a kitchen aid mixer just so I can make this delicious looking recipe.